With the NFL Annual Meetings underway in Phoenix this week, teams will vote on 15 potential rules changes proposed both by individual teams and by the league's competition committee.
The Seahawks proposed one change this year, a joint proposal with Buffalo that would allow a coach to challenge any officials' decision except scoring plays and turnovers.
On a conference call with the media, NFL senior vice president of officiating Dean Blandino said, "The Buffalo-Seattle proposal would be allowing a coach to challenge any officiating decision, which would include a foul that is called or a foul that is not called. And so, that is a significant change to our current replay rule, and it is something that will be on the floor, and be debated and voted on."
Another proposed change that might be of interest to the Seahawks and their fans is one that would prohibit leaping over the line of scrimmage to block an extra point or field goal attempt, something Bobby Wagner did successfully in last year's game at Arizona, and that Kam Chancellor attempted in a playoff game against Carolina two years ago. Chancellor recently took to Twitter to express his displeasure with that proposed change.
Rich McKay, the chairman on the NFL competition committee, explained that the proposal is one that focuses on player safety.
"We've looked at a lot of tape on the jumper, is that how it's being defensed at this point is whether it's the snapper or the guard raising up and attempting to make contact with the jumper," he said. "And we've seen several examples where the players have been flipped over, land on their head, their neck, and a potential for a serious injury is certainly increases when you have a player in a vulnerable position, who's now going to be knocked off balance and really can't control the way they land. So I think that's probably the biggest thing and we have seen that on tape as to why the proposal will be voted on."
Added executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent: "And frankly we've also heard our coaches tell us, you know they're now coaching to defend that leaper, which really could create a real safety issue with that defender coming down and now jumping over. So the inevitable is going to happen, and just hearing from the players association, Philly now proposing it is really in the best interest of the game."
Here is a full list of the proposed changes:
1 By Philadelphia; Gives additional protections for long snappers on kick plays.
2. By Philadelphia; Prohibits the "leaper" block attempt on field goal and extra point plays.
3. By Philadelphia; Expands the "crown of helmet" foul to include "hairline" part of helmet.
4. By Philadelphia; Amends the challenge system by granting a third challenge if a club is successful on at least one of its initial two challenges, and expands reviewable plays outside of two minutes of each half.
5. By Washington; Eliminates the limit of three total challenges per team per game and eliminates the requirement that a team be successful on each of its first two challenges in order to be awarded a third challenge.
6. By Washington; Moves the line of scrimmage to the 20-yard line for any touchback where the free kick travels through the uprights.
7. By Buffalo and Seattle; Permits a coach to challenge any officials' decision except scoring plays and turnovers.
8. By Competition Committee; Makes permanent the rule that disqualifies a player who is penalized twice in one game for certain types of unsportsmanlike conduct fouls.
9. By Competition Committee; Changes the spot of the next snap after a touchback resulting from a free kick to the 25-yard line for one year only.
10. By Competition Committee; Reduces the length of preseason and regular season overtime periods to 10 minutes.
11. By Competition Committee; Gives a receiver running a pass route defenseless player protection.
12. By Competition Committee; Makes crackback blocks prohibited by a backfield player who is in motion, even if he is not more than two yards outside the tackle when the ball is snapped.
13. By Competition Committee; Replaces the sideline replay monitor with a hand-held device and authorizes designated members of the Officiating department to make the final decision on replay reviews.
14. By Competition Committee; Makes it Unsportsmanlike Conduct to commit multiple fouls during the same down designed to manipulate the game clock.
15. By Competition Committee; Makes actions to conserve time illegal after the two-minute warning of either half.
Seahawks Kids Club members were treated to an autograph session with Seahawks center Justin Britt on Saturday, March 25 at The Landing in Renton.